Over half the children subject to custody proceedings and rules are currently too young to be vaccinated for COVID. What if one parent is not vaccinated for COVID and the other objects to visitation time with the unvaccinated parent?

A NY judge recently ruled that in order for a parent in a specific case to have visitation with his 3-year-old child, the father either needed to be vaccinated for COVID or be COVID tested before such visitation. The specifics of the case are less important here, but overall this is illustrative of the powers of the court to act in the best interests of the child. A family court cannot compel a parent to get vaccinated, but their span of control covers access. That’s what the court here did — limit access in the best interests of the child.

This case is not precedential nor does it apply in NJ. But sometimes these cases of first impression can be influential.